In today’s busy and digitalised world, it has become so easy to lose focus and concentration because of the tonnes of distractions around us. As a result, we forget what our actual goal and objective is, we stumble on the track we are walking on and our goal becomes blurred and far-fetched.

I was diverted from my chosen path towards success and so I sat down and pondered how to keep myself focused.

After a lot of contemplation and reflection, I found some helpful tips. I am going to share these pointers with you, which I swear by now, and these have done wonders for me.

Reward yourself

Who wants to work on a boring lengthy assignment or homework when your favourite TV show is being aired or a movie is awaiting you in your watch list?

Probably no one! But then it is primarily important to attempt the assigned work if we don’t want to fail. Most of the time, it happens that we are reluctant in completing our task because we have so many other exciting things to occupy our mind that it keeps getting delayed for days. In the end, it only becomes a worrisome burden on our head as the deadline reaches near.

So here is the trick. For example, if your assignment or homework is divided into sections, then encourage yourself that you will get to read your favourite novel as soon as you complete the first section. This will surely lift up your spirits and you will quickly get on with your task. Then repeat the same strategy with other sections too, and the assigned task will be completed in no time. This is because you will become motivated and, by rewarding yourself, you were able to increase your eagerness and productivity.

Make a daily planner

Making daily planners and to-do lists are highly recommended by teachers in the ‘Personality Development’ courses and also in general. Daily planners are one of the most effective ways of staying focused on your goals and priorities.

Develop the habit of making a daily planner for the next day, every night before going to bed. Jot down all the important tasks neatly that need to be completed tomorrow by assigning them a relevant time frame.

The planner should be simple, precise and to the point. Eventually, you will acquire inner satisfaction and happiness as you see your tasks being completed one by one on the planner. Seeing things written down brings a clearer prospective to any task or idea.

Reduce your screentime

Social media nowadays has become more of a menace than a blessing in disguise. Constant check on the notifications, useless scrolling to pass out time and comparing ourselves with celebrities and their lifestyles has severely affected our psychology and emotional stability.

Apart from that, some popular games like PUBG, FreeFire or Minecraft are also adversely consuming the time and attention of kids, teenagers and even adults.

Reduce your screentime in order to concentrate on more important things, like the goals you have set, the dreams you want to achieve, etc. Keep your mind away from distractions, especially social media. If you really want to keep up with your social media, then fix your social media time and strictly adhere to it.

Use sticky notes

This is my personal favourite! It has proved very effective in terms of staying in focus. Search for inspirational and motivational quotes and sayings by the successful people (related to any field) and write them down on sticky notes. Then paste those sticky notes on your mirror or a wall where it is easy to see them frequently.

Similarly, also jot down all the goals you want to achieve in life on your sticky notes. At times it happens that we have multiple plans, but we often forget one or two of them. So, in this way, you will keep remembering it. This idea is very fruitful as it will help you stay motivated, inspired and will keep you away from pessimism and backing out.

Divide your time fairly

It is essentially important to work on your time management and it is probably one of the most difficult things to do. Working according to your daily planner, divide your time fairly for all the tasks so that no task takes excessive time and you on the right track of moving steadily towards your goal.

According to an excerpt by productivity consultant Charlie Gilkey, it is important to follow a policy of ‘time blocking’, that is setting aside carefully considered chunks of time for appropriate tasks. He basically means that the tasks that require most creativity and attention should be dealt with first and should be allocated the greatest number of hours. Likewise, set aside some time regularly for exercise, meditation and self-care as these are important to keep you at your peak and make you more productive.

Gain knowledge

Primary and secondary education goes side by side, but it’s really important to go beyond that if you are genuinely serious about your goal. For this you have to explore more by yourself. The educational institution you are studying at would make way for you and will give you a direction, but the real struggle would be solely made by you.

So, try to get into extensive research of your domain, try to gather data regarding it and what opportunities are out there for you. The internet is the best zone for research-related activities. Master yourself in what you want to achieve in future by researching it, gaining knowledge about it and then trying to implement it practically.

Chase your dreams

Don’t be lazy or fall off-side in pursuit of your dream. The golden rule for staying in focus is to chase your dreams with full zeal and enthusiasm. For this, it includes all the above tasks you can perform. Our mind is the most powerful tool of our body. When easily manipulated, it can become a source of destruction or creativity.

Apply all the techniques to make your mind follow the direction of your goals. This would surely enhance your focus.

Stay optimistic!

A lot of uncertain and unfavourable events in life can make you pessimistic. You feel as if you have lost yourself somewhere, and the goals seem far-fetched now. You have to realise that all the downs are part of life too and even the most successful people of this world faced challenges more severe than this. Majority of them had nothing at their disposal and started from scratch and soon the world witnessed them making history. So, try to find positivity in every situation you are in, with only one thing in mind, that this could be one step closer to your goal.

Last, but not the least, always try to stay happy; because a happy mind is a happy soul and a happy soul is a happy future.

Helen Keller famously said: “Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow.”

Published in Dawn, Young World, September 25th, 2021

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